Chatham News

The Fourth River hosts Robin Becker for Joint Launch Event on March 16

PITTSBURGH:  On Friday, March 16th, at 7 p.m. in the Welker Room of James Laughlin Music Hall, on Chatham University’s Shadyside campus, the Chatham University MFA in Creative Writing Program proudly launches Issue 15: Displacement of The Fourth River, a journal of nature and place-based writing.

Additionally, we will be celebrating the launch of Fourth River contributor, Robin Becker’s new collection of poetry, The Black Bear Inside Me. Books will be available for signing after the event.

The event is free and open to the public. Contact MFA Program Assistant, Kelly Kepner, at for more information.

About The Fourth River:
The Fourth River is the literary journal of Chatham University’s MFA Program. We welcome submissions of creative writing that explore the relationship between humans and their environments, both natural and built, urban, rural or wild. We are looking for writing that is richly situated at the confluence of place, space and identity–or that reflects upon or makes use of landscape and place in new ways.

About Robin Becker:
Robin Becker received the Lambda Award in Poetry for All-American Girl and has held fellowships from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard. Her books include The Black Bear Inside Me, just released by Pitt Press, Tiger Heron, Domain of Perfect Affection, The Horse Fair, and Giacometti’s Dog. Professor Emeritus of English and Women’s Studies at Penn State, Becker serves as poetry and contributing editor for the Women’s Review of Books.

About Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing Program:
Chatham’s MFA in Creative Writing program consists of both an on-the-ground full-residency program and a low-residency, online program with concentrations in travel writing, teaching, publishing, or nature writing in addition to a primary genre focus (poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, or children’s writing).  The program offers innovative field seminars that include travel to such places as Costa Rica, Ecuador, India, and Germany. The Words Without Walls program, in which MFA students go into the Allegheny County Jail to teach inmates creative writing, is one of several social outreach programs developed and run by Chatham MFA students that offer transformative experiences for both students and an underserved population. In 2007 Poets & Writers named the MFA one of “Nine Distinctive Programs” and The Atlantic Monthly named it one of five innovative/unique programs in the country in its “Best of the Best” graduate program listings. In 2009, The Writer named it one of ten programs that offer a specialty focus. For more information, visit